What to do now• Schedule a sit-down meeting with your direct supervisor• In that meeting, discuss onboarding requirements, work schedule, learning objectives, initial assignments, other expectations• Edit learning objectives memo based on conversation with supervisor• Draft a description of your first assignment to use in your confidentiality exercise (due. Jan. 14)• Provide final learning objectives and draft confidentiality exercise to supervisor
What to do during the semester• Check Blackboard at least weekly, and do your assignments (under Weekly Reflections)!• Record your work time at the end of workday (on the Excel spreadsheet provided).• Write journal entries as required.• Interact with your group members regularly.• Be proactive about scheduling regular meetings with your supervisor to check in, and midterm and final evaluation meetings.• Talk to me if you have any difficulty.
What to do at the end of the semester• Check End of Semester Checklist on Blackboard to ensure you are on track to complete all requirements; catch up.• Schedule an end-of-semester meeting with your supervisor to discuss your evaluation and closing out your projects.• Schedule exit interviews with me (Google calendar).• Submit final timesheet.• Submit evaluations of placement/program.
Learning Objectives and Interviewing Skills 20-25 minutes
Client Interviewing Skills• Active listening o Eye contact o Nodding/responding o Repeat back what was said, but in your own words o Reflect back client’s feelings by stating your interpretation o Reassure/inform• Structuring the interview o Ask for a general description of “why we’re here.” Summarize your understanding of it. o Allow client to tell their story, but if necessary, keep them on track with prompts (“and then what happened?”). o Based on what you’ve learned, go back and probe for detail. o Conclude with a summary of the situation, and what should happen next.
Client Interviewing Skills Question types o Open-ended questions • Encourage sharing information not already known • Avoids skewing data you receive • Useful to start out an interview • Keep the client talking with “…and then what? What else? Do you have anything to add to that?” o Narrowing questions • Help to jog the client’s memory for more detail • Useful to probe for additional information once you have the basic outline o Yes/no questions • Zero in on a detail that you need to know one way or the other o Leading questions • Risk distorting information • Avoid unless needed to confirm information, or obtain information client is reluctant to admit
Method• Identify students who have had a field placement before.• Wherever possible, pair a new field placement student with an experienced one.• “Senior” student interviews “new” student about learning objectives.• Present “new” student (background, placement, objectives) to whole group• If time: “new” students ask “senior” students about their objectives
Now what?• Bring a draft of the learning objectives memo with you to discuss in your first meeting with your supervisor.• Do not just ask them to “sign off” on the objectives. Provide just the first page of the Learning Objectives memo to your supervisor so they understand their role in this process.• Engage your supervisor on the contents of the memo. o Are these realistic? o What tasks will help? o Confirm work schedule/schedule change preferences.• Write it down!• Submit the objectives memo by Jan. 14.
Method• Locate your assignment on your Blackboard group page.• What information do you need? Brainstorm the questions to ask for this assignment.• What are some good ways to make sure you get the information you need, generally? Strategize.• Report back to whole class on two or three strategies.
Strategies for getting the info you need• Have pen and paper in hand• Prepare your questions beforehand• Try to have a sit-down session with the supervisor instead of email; ask when is a good time to come talk to them (when they are not busy)• During the meeting ask supervisor whether there’s information that they want to make sure you know or understand; ask for background; ask how it will be used when you are done; ask the supervisor what their goals are• Ask supervisor if/when available for additional questions, or if not, who you should contact• How many topics/how long/expected scope of project• After you get the assignment, summarize and repeat back to make sure you understand• Summarize the assignment in an email to double-check that you have everything right• After your meeting, read over your notes and see if you have any questions• If you realize you have a question later, keep a running list so you don’t have to bother supervisor as frequently• Ask where to find the current version of the document you need to work with• Ask supervisor’s secretary for assistance in locating documents, examples, etc.
Strategies for getting the info you need• Ask if you can sit in the supervisor’s office and work through a series of short assignments as examples• If you need to contact other companies, be sure you know who at the company• Get contact information for client/other party• Get a deadline; ask follow-up questions about when the final product is due to the ultimate recipient• Ask for example of similar assignment, a “go-by”• Ask which part of the contract we’re concerned with• Westlaw or Lexis? (Can you use either? Yes.); direction as to other sources of law where you can find the answer; Practical Law Company sources or EDGAR?• Which jurisdiction?• Is there a treatise or guide in this area?• Is there a specific memo format or is there an example of a memo that’s preferred? What form of final product do they want?• If it’s a contract assignment, see if there’s a template or form
Method• Use your “Assignment” scenario as the background• Pick “supervisor” and “student”• Locate your role summaries on Blackboard group page• Role play• Discussion• Report back on strategies
Part I: Role PlayAct I: The extern catches the supervisor off-guard in the hall. The extern must succeedin getting the supervisor to agree to sitdown in a meeting to discuss feedback onthe selected assignment in detail.Act II: The supervisor and extern are in theprearranged meeting, and discussingfeedback on the assignment.
Part II: DiscussionAct Io What are some strategies for getting the supervisor to give the level of feedback you need to learn something from it?Act IIo Comment on the tone of the student in responding to criticism. If you were the supervisor, what impression would you get? Would it make you feel uncomfortable?o Did the extern get constructive criticism about how to do better? What strategies can you come up with for getting that information? Report back on 2-3 strategies.
Strategies for getting constructive feedback• Be flexible. Work with supervisor on schedule, don’t wait till the last minute.• Be persistent. Try varying methods of communication – email, call, in person.• Send an email with specific times when you could meet, or ask supervisor to check schedule.• Press for a specific date/time, not just “later.”• Work with assistant to get on calendar.• Maintain a respectful tone when asking for time for feedback.• Don’t accost them in the hallway – get them at a time when they have access to their calendar and they’re available to schedule.• Give them an idea of how much time – “I’ll only take 20 minutes.”• Walk with the person you want feedback from to their office.• Set a time to follow up if you haven’t heard back.
Strategies for getting constructive feedback• Be humble; don’t think you’re the best; you’re a student and still have things to learn, so don’t think “this should have been good enough.”• Ask as many questions as possible; be proactive about asking what you need to do to improve.• Mention some of the things you think you did not as well, then they can give you advice on those, and they see that you know what you didn’t do as well.• Ask if you need to redo any part that you’re missing; ssk if you want to do edits together, or if they just want you to resubmit.• Ask for ideas on how to improve that skill/rephrase; ask for ideas/strategies about how to generally improve on a skill (e.g., catching typos, finding the right cases).• Express that it’s important to you.• If you feel like you need to explain, do so in the context of getting constructive feedback or acknowledging what you’ve learned.• Ask for a sample document in the future to get a sense for overall structure/style.
Problem Solving• Locate your hypotheticals on Blackboard group page• Volunteer: read each hypothetical aloud. For each one: o Brainstorm the issues this raises. o Identify possible solutions. o Develop a plan of action.• Pick one of these to present to whole class.
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